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Nov 5, 2014

If He Had Not Come ~ A Book Review

David Nicholson is a retired teacher who wanted to bring the gospel message to families. If He Had Not Come was written by Nan Weeks and originally published in an anthology in 1938.  Mr. Nicholson heard it in church and had retold it to his family for decades before deciding to revive the story for a new generation.  The timeless story illustrates what the world would be like if Jesus never came to earth for us.  It's based on John 15:22.

If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not be guilty of sin;
but now they have no excuse for their sin.

Illustrations by Charles Jaskiewicz, who has illustrated other religious and children's books.

At size 8.5" x 11" with 40 pages, this sturdy hardbound book will last us many, many years and even more readings.  Little people will take delight in the classic illustrations.

Christmas Book Review

Bobby goes to sleep on Christmas Eve with these words on his mind.  When he wakes up, it isn't Christmas Day.  He runs around town trying to understand what has happened.  What he sees is confusing and concerning.  No businesses have closed for Christmas.  No one knows who Jesus is.  There is no hospital and no orphanage.  It is decidedly a different take on a Christmas tale.

I read If He Had Not Come first and my immediate thought was that it didn't touch on the most important aspect of "if He hadn't come" and that is salvation.  My second impression was that there *would* be hospitals and orphanages.  There would be pleasant people.  Maybe not as many.  Then I made myself suspend those thoughts and enjoy the point of the book.   I planned to read it to the boys later and just left it on the coffee table.  It wasn't all that long before they'd both picked it up and read it of their own volition.  They've read it several times on their own and I've discussed it with them individually.  I was so pleased that they both understood the most important part of all.  Xav figured it out without any prompting.

I would be a bit disappointed if this story, enjoyable as it was, were the end of the book.  However, there is more.  The next section includes discussion starters for families and Sunday school teachers.  The children have to put themselves in Bobby's shoes and think about how they would feel under the circumstances.  They're asked to ponder the verse the book is based on and to consider what's most important on Christmas.

Next, the Going Deeper section in the back does touch on what it would have meant for us spiritually if Jesus had not come.  This section is written by Josh Mulvihill, a pastor and adjunct professor.  Here, you will consider Bible verses that explain why Jesus came to earth AND what it would mean spiritually if He Had Not Come.  Hooray!

This section is followed by the ABCs of salvation.  The best gift ever!  And, finally, a drawing activity to help young learners think about the many ways a Christmas tree can remind us of Jesus and His gift of eternal life.

This will definitely be added to our Christmas book collection.  It's one we'll enjoy for years to come and I'm sure as the boys grow in understanding, it will become all the more beloved.

Ages 6 and up.  This book is for parents, grandparents, Sunday school teachers, and anyone else involved in the spiritual upbringing of children.
$18.95 for hardcover

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